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Re: [vox-tech] Here's my project, please give me some feedback
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Re: [vox-tech] Here's my project, please give me some feedback



On Sun, 18 Jul 2004, Kedar Soman wrote:

> Just joined this list, hope to learn something and contribute something.
> And here is my topic.
> I am developing a website to log programming errors. The URL is as follows
> http://kedar.freeshell.org/index.php
> The reason for doing this is many times the error message tells us nothing
> about what to do to correct the error. Google is the only option, which does
> work mostly. But it would be good to have some website which tells us "what
> folks have done when they faced certain error". This would be especially
> good for novice programmers.

My first programming instructor was adamant that having a clear
understanding of correct syntax is necessary if you want to program
effectively... at the time I thought he was kind of anal, but my
experience has lead me to agree with him.  Compiler errors are almost
always due to failure to think like a compiler in constructing your code,
so go back and study the syntax of the first error you find until you get
it right.  Later errors may be a result of a confused compiler, so beware
of trusting them.  Experienced programmers know that syntax problems are
the easy ones... making the program do what you WANT after it compiles is
much more difficult.

> So here is my trial project. I had found a really good guestbook PHP script
> , which I modified it to suit my purpose here. It's still not well refined
> and needs lot more work from my side.
> Any suggestions and criticism is most welcome. And if you contribute some
> errors and remedies (especially those errors for which the remedy is totally
> somewhere else and not well documented, and highly non-intuitive) that would
> be great. Are there any similar websites? Atleast I haven't found any.

My point above about trusting your input also applies to Google searching,
and to your project as well, only in reverse.  When presented with error
messages, Google tends to find questions in email/newsgroup threads, and I
follow the thread to the end to find more and more refined answers to the
problem.  From looking at your site, the answers given there represent the
research of the people who originally encountered the problem... and they
are posting their "aha!" solutions at the same time as the problem.  
Unfortunately, they have had the least amount of time to think about the
answer, and they are only one person thinking about it.  Refinement is
only going to occur if people with a better understanding of the problem
are paying attention and adding comments.  I think many people who like to
offer "better answers" often prefer not to start out all their responses
by correcting the rough guesses of the original poster... they would
rather just write their "better" answer to a QUESTION, rather than tell
the original poster their answer was wrong.  Also, the open endedness of
an email or newsitem allows all sorts of detail to be included that is
often pertinent.  You might want to consider how to address these points
in the design of your system.

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